Museum Hours:

Saturday 10-6

Sunday 12-5

 

Early Color Television

TK-41 at Mock Battle - Fort Meade, 1954

Courtesy of Wayne Bretl

Wayne Bretl's comments:

Well, not really. Aug. 11, 1954, color TV camera mounted in an amphib vehicle televises mock battle at Ft. Meade. Camera definitely not battle ready, and cameraman is very much out of uniform; plus the remote truck at the other end of that thick cable is not shown

The military did make practical use of color TV for indoor communications and medical training, however.

James Cozart's comments:

It was SOP during military games, for military photographers to wear either a bright orange or green shirt to avoid being clobbered by one of the "enemy"!

"TV given test under army combat conditions -- A TV camera mounted on an amphibious vehicle that cannot move beyond the length of the camera cable that is shown in the picture, covers a simulated combat maneuver . . . . "

I'd say this smells like an RCA publicity stunt staged to demonstrate the perfection of their new 1954 color cameras!

I would doubt that Ft. Meade would have had a signal unit with color cameras. Film cameras , probably, and B&W TV cameras, maybe, to provide close ups used in larger training classes, but no color at the time.

Until portable video recorders became practical in color, everything had to be done live. Any major film or video production would have been supported by the Army Pictorial Center in Long Island City, NY.

I know that by 1963 when I was there, we had traveling video and film units to do production work. Then the film and video units were split and all the money went to the video units and the film production soon went completely to private contractors, with the gubberment getting out of the film business.

Come to think about it, most, if not all, of the video production at the time I left the Army in 1965, was released on 16mm B&W film.

Courtesy of Steve Dichter

NBC telecast the "battle," in color, nationwide. Seems a former general named Sarnoff still had some pull.